52 percent of Kuwait respondents anticipate salary increase in 2015 – 69 percent say their salary is lower than other companies
KUWAIT: The 2015 Bayt.com MENA Salary Survey, conducted by Bayt.com, the Middle East’s number one jobsite, and leading market research agency, YouGov, has found that more than half of Kuwait professionals are expecting a salary increase in 2015, although 39 percent admit that they did not receive one in 2014.
Current Salary and Future Expectations
Across the MENA region, a little over half (52 percent) of professionals surveyed claim that their current package consists of basic salary plus benefits. In Kuwait, 38 percent said that they receive a basic salary with benefits; another 14 percent are also entitled to commissions. For over almost half of the respondents surveyed in Kuwait (48 percent) who receive a basic salary along with other benefits, the basic salary consists of76-100 percent of their monthly salary package, while for 31 percent their basic salary represents 51-75 percent of their overall monthly income.
Based on the survey, 61 percent of respondents in Kuwaitprefer a 100 percent fixed-pay structure. Today, 43 percent of Kuwait professionals are unhappy with their income, compared to just 4 percent who are highly satisfied with what they earn.
More than half (54 percent) of Kuwait respondents state that men and women get equal pay for doing the same work. Moreover, according to 69 percent of respondents in Kuwait, their salary is lower than what other companies in their industry offer.
Surprisingly, 39 percent of Kuwait respondents said that they did not get a pay raise in 2014. For those who did, 26 percent were either very or modestly happy with their raise. Another 28 percent thought that their raise was fair in light of their contribution to the company or the organization’s financial situation – or even both. 45 percent of Kuwait professionals are quite unhappy or very unhappy with their raise.
Almost a third (29 percent) of Kuwait respondents do not expect to receive a salary increase in 2015. In parallel, 30 percent expect a raise of up to 15 percent. In Kuwait, the most common benefits offered by companies are personal medical insurance (27 percent) and personal annual air ticket (27 percent). A total of 64 percent of Kuwait professionals claim that their company does not pay for overtime.
Loyalty, End of Service Benefits, and Insurance
Sixty one percent of Kuwait respondents recognize that their loyalty to their company is, on some level, based on the salary that they earn. For 29 percent, however, that is just not the case. Other variables that drive Kuwait professionals’ loyalty to their company include opportunities for long-term career advancement (35 percent) and their line manager (38 percent). In Kuwait, 65 percent of respondents receive an end-of-service gratuity and a mere 6 percent get pension upon retirement. 29 percent have access to other forms of end-of-service benefits or none at all. Twenty seven percent of Kuwait professionals have access to medical insurance for themselves – through their company – while 11 percent are also offered coverage for their dependents.
Cost of Living, Quality of Living, and Savings
A staggering 89 percent of Kuwait respondents have seen the cost of living rise in 2014, with 40 percent saying that it grew by more than 20 percent. These Kuwait respondents who mentioned that the cost of living increased attribute it to increases in the cost of rent (86 percent), food and beverages (71 percent), and utilities (29 percent). 80 percent of Kuwait respondents expect that the cost of living will continue to soar throughout the year. The increased cost of living has, in turn, hampered these professionals’ ability to save: 28 percent of Kuwait respondents admit that they save nothing from their monthly salary. Still, 64 percent of expats in Kuwait manage to repatriate a portion of their salary to their home country.
Despite the Kuwait’s high cost of living, 45 percent of Kuwait respondents say that they are better off, in terms of quality of life, compared to other people of a similar generation in their country of residence. In the next 12 months, 55 percent of Kuwait professionals intend to look for a better job in the same industry, while 33 percent aim to find one in another industry. 63 percent believe that salaries in the Kuwait are increasing.
As for the factors causing salaries to increase, respondents in the Kuwait think that these include inflation/rise in cost of living (50 percent) and opportunity and economic growth (34 percent). On the other hand, the elements that are hindering pay rises are poor corporate performance/decreased profitability (31 percent) and a bad economy (23 percent). “The 2015 Bayt.com MENA Salary Survey indicates that there is a growing gap between the cost of living in Kuwait and salary earnings and propensity to save,” said Suhail Al-Masri, VP of Sales, Bayt.com. “Most respondents (79 percent) from across the Middle East and North Africa region are expecting a further increase in the cost of living in 2015.
This means that employers must quickly address this widening disparity if they want to effectively tap into the local and regional talent pool.
This study was especially designed to provide employers with insights into employee satisfaction levels with salary and raise received. Such information is key to guiding both employers and job seekers, so the mismatch between salaries and living costs can be successfully addressed. Ultimately, it is about equipping professionals across the career and industry spectrums with the right tools needed to make their next career move – one that can better suit their lifestyle. Tools such as the Bayt.com Salary Search can help employers uncover the salaries that are being paid in their industry. This way, employees will be happier with their pay and will have less reason to worry about the rising cost of living.” Elissavet Vraka, YouGov, also added: “With about one-third (32 percent) of respondents from across the region admitting that they are unable to save any money at all, there is no doubt that the need for a salary boost, especially as prices continue to climb, is a very real one. After all, this is impacting employees’ loyalty to their company and encouraging them to jump ship. If they want to retain their employees, employers, on their part, will have to find new ways to improve their salary packages.”
Financial Investments, Expenses and Home Ownership
Only 19 percent of Kuwaitrespondents make regular investments (at least once a month), with insurance and investment plans (25 percent) being the most popular investment product. When it comes to eating out, 16 percent of respondents in Kuwaitdo it daily, while 25 percentchoose to eat out a few times a week, and 39 percent eat out a few times a month. Kuwaitrespondents’ top monthly expenses comprise rent (62 percent) followed far behind by dining out (8 percent), children’s schooling (9 percent) and transportation (3 percent). While over one third of Kuwaitrespondents already own a home, 24 percent of Kuwait respondents who currently do not own a home would like to ownone in their country of residence. Another 76 percent aspire to own a home in their home country.
Source - Kuwait Times